A Pharma Social Media Precedent Has Been Set

For the first time ever, a pharmaceutical company social media site has been practically shut down due to a barrage of posts made by a “disgruntled” patient. The site is sanofi-aventis’s (S-A’s) VOICES Facebook page.

As reported by Pharma Marketing Blog, Shirley Ledlie, a cancer survivor who had permanent hair loss after taking Taxotere, a drug marketed by sanofi-aventis (S-A), has succeeded in causing S-A to shut down all comments to the Wall of its Facebook page (see “Disgruntled Patient Shuts Down sanofi-aventis Facebook Page“).

“I actually think i did a very good job in closing down the FB page of Europes largest drugs company, something i am very proud of and something i havent finished with yet,” said Shirley Ledlie in a comment made to my “Ask Social Media Intern” questionnaire/survey.

“In a quick visit to the VOICES page,” said John Mack, author of Pharma Marketing Blog, “I found that all the posts to the Wall had been deleted and have been replaced by this statement: ‘sanofi-aventis VOICES has no recent posts.’ No further comments can be posted to the VOICES Wall. It appears that S-A could not stand up to the onslaught waged by Ledlie’s solitary ‘voice’ and just decided to call it quits!”

A precedent has been set by this experience, which does not bode well for the future of pharma social media,” said Mack.

In a comment to Mack’s post, Andrew Spong (@andrewspong) said that “S-A sleep-walked into this. I think Ms. Ledlie has achieved rather more than that. I don’t think she’s been tilting at windmills: I think she has provided us a with a compelling example of what happens when pharma companies want to maintain a presence on a social media platform whilst playing ‘see no evil, hear no evil, speak no evil’. I say good for Ms. Ledlie.”

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4 Responses to A Pharma Social Media Precedent Has Been Set

  1. […] aventis’s Facebook meltdown Blogging superhero John Mack and his trusty sidekick¬† SMIntern have been musing over Sanofi aventis’s decision to pull comments from their official Facebook […]

  2. Pamela Kirby says:

    I am another breast cancer survivor with permanent hair loss from the use of TAXOTERE. I am extremely grateful to be alive but wish I had been told the truth and given the option for another drug. There are and were equally effective drugs at the time of my treatment that do not have the side effect of permanent hair loss. My oncologist was not aware of the side effect at the time either. However, after much research I have discovered that the drug company knew about this possibility almost five years before my treatment but did not publish it as a side effect. I notified the company and the FDA so that other women have the option of full disclosure. Still, I hear about women every week who were not told/warned and are permanently bald.
    We are a society capable of communicating efficiently and effectively so that we can make educated, informed decisions. It is my hope that all women are given correct and full information when facing the decision-making process of breast cancer treatment.

  3. […] Pharma Social Media for Dummies PR for Pharma: Course Correcting the Sanofi-Aventis Social Media Firestorm The Balding Blog: Permanent Hair Loss from Cancer Drug Taxotere Bnet.com: Sanofi’s Latest Challenge Bnet.com: Sanofi, European Regulators to Bald Breast Cancer Patients: Drop Dead Pharma Marketing Blog: Patient Unadvocate Lays Siege to Sanofi Pharma Marketing Blog: Should Sanofi-Aventis Submit an Adverse Event Report…? March 17th, 2010 | Tags: alopecia, breast cancer, chemotherapy, permanent hair loss, Sanofi-Aventis, taxotere | Category: Personal Hairstories […]

  4. […] Pharma Social Media for Dummies PR for Pharma: Course Correcting the Sanofi-Aventis Social Media Firestorm The Balding Blog: Permanent Hair Loss from Cancer Drug Taxotere Bnet.com: Sanofi’s Latest Challenge Bnet.com: Sanofi, European Regulators to Bald Breast Cancer Patients: Drop Dead Pharma Marketing Blog: Patient Unadvocate Lays Siege to Sanofi Pharma Marketing Blog: Disgruntled Patients Shuts Down Sanofi-Aventis Facebook Page Pharma Marketing Blog: Should Sanofi-Aventis Submit an Adverse Event Report…? MedAdNews Insider: Sanofi-Aventis Social Media Mess Siren Song: Online Reputation is Essential: Sanofi-Aventis Fake Facebook Page Has 3,783 Fans Trusted MD: Sanofi-Aventis Feels the Social Media Pain Mark Blevis: Sanofi-Aventis Missed its Tylenol Moment March 19th, 2010 | Tags: alopecia, breast cancer, Facebook, permanent hair loss, pharmaceutical marketing, Sanofi-Aventis, social media, taxotere | Category: Uncategorized […]

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